PA Lumber Museum: Unraveling the Story of Our Working Forests

pa lumber museum

PA Lumber Museum: Unraveling the Story of Our Working Forests

Potter County | Dark Skies of the PA Wilds

The Pennsylvania Lumber Museum and Store, located along Scenic Route 6 opposite of Denton Hill State Park, is a must see destination within the Dark Skies landscape of the Pennsylvania Wilds. 

Fundraising and advocacy in the early 1960s by the Penn-York Lumbermen’s Club led to creation of the Lumber Museum, which is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum Associates. The PA Lumber Museum collects, preserves, and interprets the history of Pennsylvania’s forests and forest industries, as well as their role in the cultural and economic growth of the Commonwealth and nation, for citizens and visitors.

The forests of the Pennsylvania Wilds tell a story of resurrection — and the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum is the perfect place to learn about it.   In 2015, the PA Lumber Museum Visitors Center was reopened after a large-scale renovation. The 7,000-square foot facility is just one of 20 structures on the 160-acre property that provide insights into the lumber history of Pennsylvania and the workers who ran the industry. 

There are opportunities to view the tools, garbs, stories and photographs of the region’s lumber industry, all in one place. You’ll find a 1936 chestnut log cabin that stands as a memorial to the Civilian Conservation Corps, a 1910 Barnhart log loader and more. The history unraveled goes further back than the logging industry, however, and takes visitors on a journey, looking at the effects of the natural elements, Native Americans and settlers, and bringing them to the modern day management and use of forest resources. 

As you explore the grounds and exhibits, you take in details of Pennsylvania’s logging industry, how it fueled the Industrial Revolution, and how the hard lessons learned in our region led to one of the largest Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified sustainable forests in North America. 

Next time you “Do 6” (and travel Scenic Route 6 to explore the treasures of northern Pennsylvania), make sure to stop into the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum. You just might be surprised what you learn.

Learn more about the PA Lumber Museum or leave a review/recommendation on the Museum’s Wilds Cooperative of PA profile

TIMELY TIP

The PA Lumber Museum recently reopened with reduced hours and limited capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The PA Lumber Museum will operate on a schedule of Friday-Saturday-Sunday, 10 AM to 4 PM; closed Monday through Thursday, from April 30, 2021, until at least June 30, 2021. Operations have been adjusted to provide a safer environment for staff, volunteers, and visitors and to prevent or mitigate the spread of COVID-19.  Although all of PHMC’s facilities are unique and protocols may vary somewhat from site to site, the following guidelines apply at all properties: social distancing, masks, hand hygiene, and cleaning and disinfecting. Individuals exhibiting symptoms are asked to postpone their visit. For the most up-to-date information on PA Lumber Museum, visit lumbermuseum.org/.


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